CONGRESSMAN BISHOP LEADS LETTER TO GSA URGING THE AGENCY TO PROTECT JOB OPPORTUNITIES FOR PEOPLE LIVING WITH DISABILITIES

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) led 25 other Members of Congress in a letter to Administrator Emily Murphy of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) urging her to take into consideration any potential negative impacts to the AbilityOne Program as GSA considers reforms to federal acquisition regulations. The AbilityOne Program supports employment opportunities for more than 45,000 Americans living with blindness or other disabilities.

The Members of Congress wrote in the letter:

“We applaud GSA for highlighting the AbilityOne Program as one of the “Unique Government requirements that advance key national interests…” in its March 2018 Implementation Plan. We strongly concur with that statement and support the AbilityOne Program and the opportunities it affords people who are blind or significantly disabled to secure quality employment and enhance their opportunities for personal and economic independence.”

They continued:

“As GSA moves forward with the next two phases of its work to implement Sec. 846, we strongly urge the agency to fully assess any possible impacts regarding the use of commercial e-Commerce portals on the AbilityOne Program and the SKILCRAFT and AbilityOne products it currently sells to federal customers.”

The AbilityOne Program offers employment options and a path forward to personal and economic independence for more than 45,000 Americans, including over 3,000 veterans, who live with blindness or other significant disabilities. It is the largest source of employment for people living with disabilities, and provides goods and services for the federal government at over 1,000 locations.